On May 1 at TFAS Headquarters, staff and faculty inducted the Capital Semester Spring 2014 class into the TFAS alumni network.
The celebration included inspiring advice for students delivered by TFAS President Roger Ream (ICPES 76), Professor John Samples, student Claire Johnson (CSS 14) and Vice President of International and Alumni Programs Michelle Le (IPJ 95, AIPES 96).
Le welcomed the students into the alumni network of more than 14,000. She recommended they stay connected with TFAS in their future academic and professional careers.
“It’s an amazing network of people who are doing great things in journalism, politics, diplomacy, business and philanthropy. You are now a part of that,” Le said.
She also noted how TFAS alumni have been leaders around the world, promoting freedom in societies since the program’s beginning. In Venezuela, Ukraine and Egypt, alumni have led movements for freedom.
“I hope that you all appreciate that and join that, to fight for the good in society. You will all do it in different ways but I hope you keep that in mind as you go forward,” Le said.
Alumna Kimberly Meltzer (IPJ 96), author and assistant professor at Georgetown University, shared insight about her career and how TFAS impacted her in her keynote address.
Meltzer said looking back on her career, she can see how certain events and relationships became stepping-stones for other opportunities, but she never had a grand plan of exactly where she would go in her career. Meltzer previously worked as a journalist at CNN, NBC, the Philadelphia Inquirer and Gazette Newspapers. Meltzer referenced Nate Silver’s book “The Signal and the Noise: Why So Many Predictions Fail- but Some Don’t” in her advice for students.
“When you speak and act, contribute to the signal, not the noise,” Meltzer said.
Student Ryan Cinney (CSS 14) received the Director’s Award for Outstanding Participation at the ceremony. Cinney said before Capital Semester began she was skeptical about coming to D.C. Her classmates became the support for her to thrive during the semester.
“Everyone in the group started bonding and everything changed,” Cinney said. “This has been the best four months of my life.”
The 13 graduates spent the semester in Washington taking upper-level classes on government and economics, accredited through George Mason University and interning full time at various government agencies, think tanks, businesses and political offices throughout the city.
Student Chase Hughes (CSS 14) received the Academic Excellence in Constitutional Studies award from TFAS faculty.
“TFAS is the best way to experience D.C., especially for people interested in economics, politics, journalism and international affairs,” Hughes said.
Student award winners Included:
- Academic Excellence in Economics: Jill Daley (CSS 14)
- Academic Excellence in Constitutional Studies: Chase Hughes (CSS 14)
- Academic Excellence in Public Policy: Justin Beirold (CSS 14)
- Academic Excellence in Journalism: Charissa Wright (CSS 14)
- Directors Award for Overall Participation: Ryan Elizabeth Cinney (CSS 14)
For more information on Capital Semester, visit www.DCinternships.org/CS.